Park on the water

There’s a spot
in south Mississauga
where the branches of the willows
kiss the earth.

Sometimes when I feel the weight
of my reality too heavy
I take out an old bicycle from the garage
and ride the suburban streets
listening to the playlist you made me.

Today I don’t even change out of my old sweatpants
as I mount the machine
desperate for escape.

I steer down the strip
eyeing the early come-homers
in the slant of late afternoon light:
one guy is wearing neon shades
like he can’t wait
for May 2-4.

I veer into the park
park my tires in the sand
pop out my headphones
watch swans dive head first into
B   L   I   S   S

I soothe my own consciousness
turn my bike round
and swerve through the row of trees
with a renewed sense of duty
the same way nature
doesn’t give into the seasons
but simply
becomes part of the changing

When I return home
mother tells me the students
studied character traits in stories of